National Philanthropy Day

Quick Facts - CA

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2024 DateNovember 15, 2024
2025 DateNovember 15, 2025

National Philanthropy Day

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National Philanthropy Day History

National Philanthropy Day is a commemorative day observed annually to celebrate the charitable acts of individuals, organizations, and businesses that contribute to the well-being of society. It aims to raise awareness of the importance of philanthropy, encourage community involvement, and recognize the work of volunteers, donors, and charitable organizations. The day also serves as a platform for philanthropists and non-profit organizations to exchange ideas, network, and collaborate on various initiatives to advance social good.

The concept of National Philanthropy Day was first proposed by philanthropist and attorney Douglas K. Freeman in the early 1980s, and the day was officially recognized by the Association of Fundraising Professionals (AFP) in Canada in 1994. In Canada, National Philanthropy Day highlights the country's rich history of charitable giving and community engagement. Canadians observe this day as an opportunity to pay tribute to their homegrown philanthropists and non-profit sector, which plays a vital role in addressing pressing social issues in areas such as education, healthcare, and environmental preservation.

To observe National Philanthropy Day in Canada, various events and activities are organized throughout the country, ranging from award ceremonies to fundraising drives and volunteer opportunities. Canadians are encouraged to participate in these events and to give back to their communities through donations, volunteering, or spreading awareness of local charitable causes. Educational institutions, businesses, nonprofit organizations, and individuals come together on this day to reflect on their contributions to society and inspire ongoing philanthropic efforts. Though the date of National Philanthropy Day has varied in the past, it is now consistently celebrated on November 15th in Canada.

Facts about National Philanthropy Day

  • Former billionaire and co-founder of Duty Free Shoppers Charles 'Chuck' Feeney, 89, has donated more than $8 billion over the last four decades according to Forbes. His foundation, Atlantic Philanthropies, donates and funds charities, universities, and foundations around the world. His mission: I see little reason to delay giving when so much good can be achieved through supporting worthwhile causes.
  • The word philanthropy comes from the Greek word 'philanthrōpos', meaning loving mankind. It is the combination of the Latin 'philo', which means loving, and 'anthrōpos', which means mankind.
  • According to a 2020 report by the Fraser Institute, Canadians donated a total of CAD 10.2 billion to registered charities in 2018. Approximately 20.4% of Canadian tax filers donated to charity, with an average individual donation of around CAD 1,800.
  • Canadian tax laws provide substantial benefits for philanthropy. The federal government offers a tax credit of up to 29% for personal donations, while most provinces provide additional tax credits as well.

Top things to do in Canada for National Philanthropy Day

  • Find a charity or organization that interests you at Discover Charities
  • Give back to your community through service or donation.
  • Join a local nonprofit organization to help address pressing social issues in your community, such as hunger, homelessness, literacy, or environmental conservation.
  • Encourage young people to get involved in philanthropy, either through volunteering, donating, or participating in charitable events.

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